Careful what you wish for

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There are a number of residents celebrating the decision by a judge last week to allow Gillette lawyer Alex Berger’s name to be placed on the ballot for Weston County Attorney simply because they are dissatisfied with the performance of current County Attorney William Curley.

This newspaper has repeatedly found fault with the handling of criminal cases in Weston County in the last three years, and we understand the frustration. But we’re not celebrating Judge Fenn’s ruling because— while it offers the promise of relief for citizens who have expressed outrage over the failure of the current office to prosecute criminal defendants effectively— it offers you a short-term solution at best. The judge’s order will allow Weston County residents to cast their vote for the challenger in the Republican primary in August, but there is a good chance the election will be protested if the challenger wins.

And even if the protest is denied, we will be stuck with a ruling that will allow anybody— anywhere— to run for county office here. Will we be celebrating four years from now when the county ballot is filled with people from Jackson and Casper?

We encourage you to vote for the candidate you support, but caution that there will be more work to do after the election.

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